Lashana Lynch said she hopes her ground-breaking character in James Bond film No Time To Die will inspire young women and girls of colour.
The British actress, 33, stars in the movie as Nomi, a new double-0 agent assigned the famous 007 codename after Bond’s retirement.
Speaking at the No Time To Die premiere in London on Tuesday, Lynch, who is black and of Jamaican descent, said she wants young girls to watch the film and believe they can follow in her footsteps.
She told the PA news agency: “When I was speaking with the creators on characterising Nomi, my first thing was I wanted her to be a real woman, I wanted her to be relatable and I wanted young black girls and brown girls to see her on screen and aspire to be something bigger than what they’ve been told by the world.
“It’s important our women with agency on the screen don’t just have a strength that comes from nowhere; there’s vulnerability, the emotions they feel just being a powerful woman at work.
“And she’s a black woman at work – there’s a whole other added layer there that’s really important for me to tell. So this narrative in a Bond movie means I’m part of an industry that is making shifts I can be proud of, proud to be involved in.”
Lynch, known for roles in period drama Still Star-Crossed and superhero film Captain Marvel, told of her pride at being involved in the Bond franchise.
She told PA: “I’m proud, I’m really proud. I’m a black, working class Londoner born into a Jamaican family, in a Bond movie.
“For me, that’s something I can tell my grandkids and I feel uber, uber proud.”